- 29 Nov 21
Minding Creative Minds is Ireland's first 24/7 (32 county and our Irish overseas) wellbeing support programme for the entire Irish creative sector.
Minding Creative Minds (MCM) has rounded out its video awareness campaign with a third clip focusing on music artists, stage crew and live events employees in the creatives sector.
With streaming down and the collapse of live shows, it’s been a difficult year for artists in Ireland. Almost half of professional artists considered abandoning their career in the arts over the past year, largely due to lack of income and financial pressure, a report by the Arts Council revealed in July.
48% of artists described the financial impact of Covid-19 as "severe" and those working in music said the situation was worse in 2021 than in 2020. The survey also found that "lack of work opportunities" was the most challenging aspect of trying to maintain an artistic practice.
The Arts Council said it experienced a 90% increase in the number of funding applications in 2020 over 2019, and approved funding for 129% more applicants. It funded less than half (47%) of the total amount requested.
Given the incredible burden shouldered by those in the music industry, Minding Creative Minds are appealing to this facet of the creatives sector in particular in one of its awareness campaign videos.
MCM hope the videos will speak to the creative community, allowing them the choice to get vital mental health services, life advice, career help and more. It's the ideal way to unify an entire sector which was deeply affected by the Covid-19 restrictions, with many artists made redundant or forced to abandon their industry entirely.
The initiative, which had been in planning since 2018 by Choice Music Prize co-founder, artist manager and psychotherapy graduate Dave Reid, was launched during the summer of 2020. Initially, Minding Creative Minds services were open to the music sector only; including artists, artist managers, support staff and live music events staff, however, as a direct result of additional funding within six months the organisation’s services were opened up to the entire creative sector; almost one year ahead of schedule.
The Minister for Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sports and Media, Catherine Martin TD, recently expressed delight at being able to deliver funding to Minding Creative Minds this year.
"Given the difficulties faced by the arts and culture sectors during the pandemic this initiative has been an important intervention to support wellbeing in the creative community," Minister Martin stated. "Throughout 2021 Minding Creative Minds have continued to develop and expand their support for the Irish Creative Sector both home and abroad and I would like to congratulate them on the valuable services they provide. Covid continues to present a major challenge to the arts and culture sector and this uncertainty is very difficult to deal with and Minding Creative Minds is a key support for creatives at this challenging time.”
Over the 17 months since its launch in 2020, Minding Creative Minds has facilitated in the region of 1,000 hours of support across in the moment support, service sessions advice and counselling sessions.
“Our message is simple, with a few key guide markers; Minding Creative Minds was established specifically for our creative sector, for its people, for our needs," MCM founder Dave Reid explains. "Regardless of your job in the sector; whether you are a stage performer or if you work in a support role; you are in the Irish Creative sector and our services are available to you."
Minding Creative Minds offer a wide range of support services, from mental health support and counselling to advice on practical issues (legal, financial, life coaching, career advice, administrative questions around your business if you are self-employed and much more).
"Our focus is to support the entire individual," Reid continued. "It is hugely important to us that our colleagues and peers in our sector truly believe no issue is too trivial. You do not need to be in a crisis situation to contact us. You will hear us say and write this quite a lot! If you have anything on your mind whatsoever, contact us and let us help you. Our services are free to the user and confidential. So, if you have considered contacting us, but didn’t please follow through. We want to help.”
Minding Creative Minds' counselling services (in association with Spectrum Life) include: a 24/7 dedicated phone line; short-term intervention, phone counselling, secure video counselling and comprehensive web portal and app enabling live chat function with a counsellor.
Minding Creative Minds services can now be contacted by texting ‘Hi’ to 087 369 0010 for SMS & WhatsApp Support (standard rate applies) with a qualified psychotherapist / counsellor.
Check out the Emma Langford-featured video below: